Bernie Sanders and wife Jane Sanders hire lawyers amid FBI probe

Jane Sanders served as Burlington College's president from 2004 to 2011. In 2010, she applied for a $10 million loan to buy 33 acres of new land for the campus.
By Mae Owen | Jun 28, 2017
Sen. Bernie Sanders and Jane Sanders, his wife and the former president of the now-defunct Burlington College, have hired lawyers while the FBI investigates a loan application that Jane Sanders had filed during her tenure as college president. The FBI is looking into claims of bank fraud as well as allegations that Sen. Sanders inappropriately lobbied on behalf of his wife.

Jane Sanders served as Burlington College's president from 2004 to 2011. In 2010, she applied for a $10 million loan to buy 33 acres of new land for the campus.

The college got the loan, but it fell deep into debt and was forced to shut down in 2016. Jane Sanders is facing accusations that she falsely inflated projected donor contributions when filling out the application--accusations that the FBI is now investigating.

The investigation is scrutinizing her husband, as well, to determine if he used his political influence to put any undue pressure on the bank to approve the loan. Sen. Sanders has hired Burlington lawyer Rich Cassidy. Jane Sanders has obtained the services of Washington, DC, defense attorney Larry Robbins.

The FBI investigation began in January 2016 after Brady Toensing, a chairman for the Trump campaign in Vermont, submitted the original complaint. Sen. Sanders noted this and told news outlet WCAX-TV in May that the charges could be politically motivated.

"[This] was initiated by Trump's campaign manager, somebody who does this all of the time, has gone after a number of Democrats and progressives in this state," he said, adding that the allegations themselves were "nonsense."

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